While it’s been 15 years since the world lost Christopher George Latore Wallace, a.k.a. Notorious B.I.G. a.k.a. Biggie Smalls a.k.a. Big Poppa, his mark on music and pop culture in undeniable. March 9 is the anniversary of Wallace’s passing, and it’s only right that we spend the day honoring him. From music, to documentaries, to movie moments and delectable treats, there’s a way for everyone to celebrate Biggie’s life and career.
Listen to Life After Death In Its Entirety
Take the afternoon (or the evening if you’re at work), plug in some great headphones and really listen to all 25 tracks on Wallace’s last album. While the album is an appropriate honor in timing alone – it was released shortly after Wallace’s shocking passing – it also signaled a huge shift for the gangsta rap subgenre. Following the release of Life and Death, Sean Combs’ Bad Boy Records continued to merge elements of mainstream pop and gangsta rap, signalling a shift to cleaner, more radio-friendly tracks. And if you need an intro to the album, just know it’s the one that introduced his giant hit “Hypnotize” to the masses.
Skip Notorious, Watch Biggie and Tupac
When it comes to learning about Wallace in biopic form, avoid the reenactment of his life that is 2009’s Notorious. It’s more fitting to opt for the realistic look at the conspiracy surrounding his and fellow rapper Tupac’s untimely deaths with 2002’s Biggie and Tupac. The film includes an interview with Wallace’s mother, Voletta Wallace, who helps to paint a humanizing, touching picture of her late son. It’s an element integral to his memory, moving our consciousness beyond the less flattering elements of his personal life.
Find Your Favorite Biggie Movie Scene
Since Wallace’s passing, his music has become the go-to soundtrack for debauchery and poignancy alike. From films like The Wackness to even teen rom-coms like 10 Things I Hate About You, Biggie provides the soundtrack to some of our favorite moments. Mine happens to be this party scene with a young Julia Stiles and the late Heath Ledger.
For the Over-Acheiver: Visit The Golden Krust Bakery on Fulton Street in Brooklyn
If you can’t get to Brooklyn, that’s fine. These places are all over Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, New Jersey, Maryland, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. West Coasters, better luck next year. But for those close enough to the Big Apple – or ambitious enough to try and make it out there by 12 a.m. ET – this is great way to get a closer to the rap icon. This is the actual establishment Wallace used to frequent, and as his former co-manager Wayne Barrow told TribecaFilm.com, it’s “where he used to hustle, eat his little chicken wings when he was broke. That’s what Brooklyn was about.”
Watch The “I’ll Be Missing You” Video
It’s only fitting that you watch the video and listen to the song that was created by Wallace’s own friends to celebrate his memory. The song features the sample of The Police’s “Every Breath You Take” as well as then-Puff Daddy and Wallace’s former wife, Faith Evans. This day wouldn’t be complete without it.